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Rocky Landscape with Hagar and Ishmael

GAINSBOROUGH, Thomas (1727 - 1788)

[image: Rocky Landscape with Hagar and Ishmael]

Media: oil on canvas

Size: 78.2 x 95.0 cm

Acquired: 1965; Purchase

Accession Number: NMW A 100

Gainsborough's only original religious composition, this work was painted around 1788. Mother and son are shown trudging into the dark wilderness. Following the description given in Genesis XXI, 9-15 Hagar carries the precious water bottle on her shoulder. With its rich, dark tonalities, this picture is an essay in the style of the seventeenth-century Spanish painter Murillo, who was a powerful influence on Gainsborough in the 1780s.


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